Skip To Main Content

It s RECESS time

Kids playing

Recess Ideas and Support

We all would generally agree that recess is good for kids. But, there is also science-backed evidence to support recess being part of the school day. Recess fosters social development, helps instill healthy habits at an early age, is good for brain development, and can improve classroom performance and behavior.

Recess Playbook: Recess Tools & Strategies and a Game Library!

Learning Landscapes Tool Kit   

Playground Scavenger Hunt

Five quick games for easy recess:


Foursquare: lots of variations

Three Lines Soccer

Around the World

Bandaid Tag

Alternatives to Withholding Recess:

  • Set up zones
  • Restrict activity choices, not ALL physical activity
  • Check-in, Check-out
  • Invite students to "walk the perimeter"

Indoor Recess

Active Indoor Recess: Action for Healthy Kids

Cosmic Kids Yoga

15 fun indoor recess games

12 teacher tested activities

Indoor Recess Survival Kit

Classroom/large space activities

Peace Path poster


Structuring Recess

Great Recess Framework

Strategies for Recess in Schools: CDC/SHAPE America

Learning Landscapes Toolkit

Peaceful Playgrounds

Recess Lab 

Article: The Power of Play

Recess Checklist

• Map your playground. Think about recurring injuries or conflicts. Is one corner of the field always a muddy hazard? Do tag games spill into the basketball court? Mark spaces for popular games and spaces that are off-limits. Post a recess map and present it so students know their boundaries.

• Check your equipment. Pump up balls and inventory any supply needs.

• Set expectations.Fidget spinners? Pokemon Go? What should students not bring to the playground? Include a letter setting recess expectations in back-to-school packets or other parent communications.

• Consider introducing a “game of the week” during PE class, assemblies, or as an option at recess. Introducing games throughout the year helps kids discover new ways to have fun (and get their heart rates up!).

Transitioning from Recess to the Classroom

Five Transitions to the Classroom So Kids are Ready to Learn

10 Ways to Calm a Class After Lunch or Recess

Mind Yeti 

Peace Path


Playworks Game Library

Cooperative Games

Health and wellness information from websites and other sources, and notices regarding events or opportunities offered in the community are provided as information only. Thompson School District makes no warranty, express or implied regarding the information, event or opportunity and assumes no responsibility or liability for loss, cost, damage, injury, claims and causes of action whatsoever, arising out of or related to providing this information.